Everyone’s on Twitter these days – you, your mom, your grandma, your high school math teacher, and yes, the police. There are plenty of reasons why a police department would want to maintain a social media presence, and many departments across the country have begun to devote time to running Twitter and Facebook accounts.
The problem is, some people are just bad at Twitter. Take some within the NYPD for example – oftentimes, not so great at Twitter. The NYPD is behind one of, if not the, most ill-advised hashtag campaign in recent memory – the spectacularly failed #myNYPD fiasco. What the NYPD began with the hopes that people would tweet their photos and memories of the NYPD serving and protecting, devolved into people tweeting photos of police brutality.
The department should’ve seen it coming. They didn’t.
Maybe if the top brass in the NYPD were simply better at Twitter, this kind of thing could be avoided. At least that’s the thought behind a new initiative to send precinct commanders to Twitter school.
The NY Post is reporting that the NYPD is now sending ‘top cops’ to Twitter school – more specifically, classes at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in Midtown.
Apparently, a memo given out at the first class simply read “USE COMMON SENSE.”
From The Post:
The cops are being warned not to post off-the-cuff remarks on Twitter and encouraged to laud community groups, send out wanted posters and post crime stats, information obtained by The Post reveals.
“They want us to put info like street closures or bus diversions because of a street fair. Also info like an accident-prone location or a picture of the cop of the month,” one source said. “Public information stuff.”
Sounds like solid advice – maybe enough to prevent stuff like this from happening again.
Image via NYPD, Twitter